Best Free Software for Linux

 
Introduction

LinuxLinux, occasionally referred to as GNU/Linux, is an open source and free operating system predominantly known for its use in servers, but has increasingly become commonplace in desktop, notebook and netbook computers in recent years after newer and enhanced versions of Linux distributions, Ubuntu or Linux Mint for example, are developed and offered free to users.

While you can get the Linux system and use it for free, you can also run on the system a wide range of free applications such as well-known and commonly-used software including Firefox web browser and the LibreOffice application suite.

Among various free applications, here you might find the best free software for Linux, including those products reviewed and recommended by our editors in the various sections.

Other programs that work as potential alternatives to Windows applications or even perform better than them are also listed here for the benefit of users who migrate from Windows to Linux or run dual systems on their computers.

How To Use This List

This is a multi-page article. To quickly find what you want, either check out the Page Index below or view everything as one huge page by clicking here .

Page Index:
 

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Summary

This list of Best Free Software for Linux now includes 145 applications in 97 categories. To read brief descriptions of the applications, click a page number from the Page Index or check out the new and recently updated apps below.

 

New and Updated Apps:

NewSimpleScreenRecorder | Back In Time | FlareGet | Dwarf Fortress | Great Little Radio Player | TORCS | OpenCity | PipeWalker | Master PDF Editor | Areca Backup

 
 
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Editor

This category is maintained by volunteer editor Jojo Yee. Registered members can contact the editor with comments or suggestions by clicking here.
You can visit the Google+ profile page of Jojo Yee here.

 
Tags

best, top, free, software, applications, freeware, Linux, Ubuntu, Mint, distros, multi, cross, platform, list, listing

 

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Comments

by famewolf (not verified) on 20. January 2011 - 2:19  (64876)

For those who preferred Amarok 1.4 over the new amarok 2.0..a lookalike named "Clementine" has been created. It should really get a mention.

Most of the newer distro's are switching from Openoffice to Libreoffice. A quick google will give specifics as to why. Libreoffice is a fork of the original openoffice project.

by Jojo Yee on 20. January 2011 - 16:07  (64911)

Thanks Famewolf for mentioning Clementine. It's now in the list.

As for LibreOffice, it's discussed in our forum thread here. This product will be added in the list once the developer has released a final version. Currently is an rc and not yet "production-ready".

[Update: The final version of LibreOffice has been released and available for download at the developer's site. This new office suite is now included in the list. Give it a try.]

by Panzer (not verified) on 1. February 2011 - 8:39  (65615)

Look what cm0nster said about Clementine:

My first experience with Clementine was not a pleasant one ...

http://www.techsupportalert.com/content/best-free-music-players-and-organizers.htm

by Jojo Yee on 2. February 2011 - 3:10  (65674)

You're spot on Panzer. Taking its place now is Rhythmbox to reflect the recent update in the review of the software category.

by famewolf (not verified) on 14. February 2011 - 0:38  (66385)

Did anyone actually try the clementine player under LINUX which is what this thread is supposed to be about? The review pointed to was from someone trying the windows version. Plenty of apps have issues when being ported from one os to another.

by christina (not verified) on 2. March 2011 - 16:49  (67318)

Hey..i got problem cant get my " HUAWEI E 1550 right set-up on my system...I use " LINUX-MINT 10.10...Hope some can help me or just in short version write how i do..???

LINUX IS THE BEST :) :) ;)

mY BEST TO u

cHRISTINA ( DENMARK )

by MidnightCowboy on 2. March 2011 - 17:16  (67320)

Hi Christina,

According to this thread it should work out of the box or at worst need a simple workaround using the USB_modeswitch application.

http://forums.linuxmint.com/viewtopic.php?f=49&t=43752

If not, there is some more information about how to configure this modem here:

http://ubuntuforums.org/showthread.php?t=1522540

by jimvandamme (not verified) on 26. April 2011 - 12:40  (70942)

You have a wireless modem dongle that only has Windows drivers. You need to install them under an app called ndiswrapper, which makes your windows drivers work under linux. Most of the time. I ran two similar dongles fine with it. It depends which version of Mint you have but it should already be installed. If not, get it from the Mint repository and search the Mint forums and documentation for advice on how to install. As I recall you have to run ndiswrapper and find the driver file that you should have copied somewhere Mint can find it. It will have a .inf on the end.

by Vahid (not verified) on 30. August 2011 - 1:23  (78600)

Hi Jojoyee,

Thanks for the nice effort again. Maybe you want to consider Krusader as a dual panel file manager.

Vahid

by BlubberBoyXXX (not verified) on 1. September 2011 - 21:52  (78835)

As for torrent clients, I think there's nothing better than Deluge. Deluge's GUI is very similar to uTorrent. So for all users who just recently switched from Windows to Linux, Deluge is a very good recommendation.

by MidnightCowboy on 2. September 2011 - 6:12  (78853)

+1 for Deluge.
I'm always trying out new distros alongside my preferred Kororaa and no matter what comes as "standard", Deluge is one of the first apps I install.

by wdhpr on 10. December 2011 - 2:36  (84741)

Jojoyee

I noticed you didn't list a text editor. I would like to suggest EditPad Lite. You can install it using Wine. It works very well with Linux Mint Julia and has many more options than gedit. I have the latest version installed and running with no problems.
Heres EditPad Lites home page http://www.editpadlite.com/

Wdhpr

by Jojo Yee on 10. December 2011 - 8:32  (84755)

Thanks for your suggestion Wdhpr. Currently this list only includes native Linux software and it doesn't include software for Windows that can be run in Linux using Wine.

by wdhpr on 18. December 2011 - 18:05  (85241)

LuckyBackup
Candidate for a Linux back up utility

I have been using FreeFileSync as a back up tool synchronizing my personal files weekly. I finally needed a reason to restore a folder I accidentally erased. I loaded FreeFileSync and switched directions to restore and executed the task. Results were a complete disaster. I thought I had done everything correctly and could not tell exactly what went wrong. I kind of feel the GUI although looks straight forward can be a bit tricky. Luckily I had made an Image and restored my system.

After doing some searching I found LuckyBackup:
http://www.liberiangeek.net/2011/02/schedule-backup-luckybackup-ubuntu-1...
Very nice and easy to use. When I did a test to restore, it worked perfectly.

There doesn't seem to be a great deal of free Linux backup utilities but so far LuckyBackup seems to work well and a possible candidate for Best Free Software For Linux list.

Cheers

by Jojo Yee on 19. December 2011 - 3:01  (85260)

Added LuckyBackup to the list and thanks Wdhpr for recommending this software.

by Mr wdhpr (not verified) on 20. December 2011 - 0:24  (85329)

The guy from Liberian Geeksays states their are allot of linux backup utilities. For starters Mint has one installed by default and its very limited. I also disagree that there are a many of them. From what I can tell many use resync as their core. Where as Window's has a ton of backup software.

Perhaps I need to look harder :\

by TK (not verified) on 20. March 2012 - 18:52  (90884)

I'm surprised there havent been arguments over the opening line, but that's good.
It might be worth mentioning (atleast briefly) the difference between free/libre software and free-of-charge software (and clarifying what you're listing... though most seems to be libre some things are not: Opera isn't and truecrypt is highly debatable in this regard).

Still... generally a good list - though a few I'd recommend considering.

* Exaile - music player, similar to clementine already mentioned, but imho a more comfortable GUI.

* Kdenlive - video editor, this is a big one imho because it's the most intuitive editor I've found yet yet supports a wide range of formats (input and output). Yes, it requires KDE libraries but so does Amarok which (imho, deservedly) makes your list.

* The browsers you have on your list are quite heavy, full featured browsers. That's fine, but when linux on netbooks is seeming to gain a little in popularity, a lighter browser mightn't be a bad idea (atleast for when needing to run alongside other apps, especially office-suites as many students would have to). Midori sadly seems somewhat crash prone on many distro's (though it's working fine on my gentoo machine) which is a shame as it's otherwise a nice browser - Epiphany is a touch heavier, but seems much more stable.

* Claws mail is worth mentioning as another good email-client, though not many people seem to use email-clients anymore.

* Deluge - my favourite torrent client. Vuze can't touch it, imho.

by Panzer on 7. April 2012 - 7:40  (91737)

Best Dock contenders:
Cairo Dock
http://glx-dock.org/

Avant Window Navigator:
http://wiki.awn-project.org/

Best Network Protocol Analyzer:
Wireshark
http://www.wireshark.org/download.html (bottom right)

by Panzer on 7. April 2012 - 18:20  (91754)

F.Lux for Linux - Redshift:
http://jonls.dk/redshift/

by Jojo Yee on 14. April 2012 - 12:48  (92082)

Thanks Panzer for good suggestions. Cairo Dock is now added to the list.

by vin100 on 6. May 2012 - 9:40  (93107)

In the section "Best Free Music Player and Organizer for Linux", you should consider Gmusicbrowser ( http://gmusicbrowser.org/ ) much better than the one mentioned

by Panzer on 31. May 2012 - 13:24  (94241)

Monsterwm is a minimal, lightweight, tiny but monsterous dynamic tiling window manager. It provides a set of different layout modes, including floating mode support. Each virtual desktop has its own properties, unaffected by other desktops' settings.

https://github.com/c00kiemon5ter/monsterwm#readme

by kkslider on 21. June 2012 - 0:15  (95176)

Tough article to write, nice job!

Some things that may be worth considering:

* Empathy as well as Pidgin

* Adobe Reader (http://www.adobe.com/products/reader.html)

* Revise image viewer. XnView as newest version is more heavyduty than its image viewing roots (XnViewMP.. or multiplatform).. theres dozens of good ones. Mirage. Geeqie. Gwenview. Gthumb. (yep I'm a GNOME user apologies)

* fre:ac used to be BonkEnc, and is a worthy CD ripper

* Shoutouts to proprietary Picasa but not the comparable Shotwell or F-Spot? For shame! =)

thats all

thanks author (would scroll up but im too lazy~!)

K. Slider

by Panzer on 5. July 2012 - 8:49  (95750)

Gnome Pie (similar to Magic Formation on Windows) for best circular application launcher:
http://www.simonschneegans.de/?page_id=12

Synapse is a semantic launcher written in Vala that you can use to start applications as well as find and access relevant documents and files by making use of the Zeitgeist engine:
https://launchpad.net/synapse-project

by Panzer on 12. July 2012 - 10:56  (96087)
by Panzer on 17. July 2012 - 7:35  (96319)

Safecopy is a data recovery tool which tries to extract as much data as possible from a problematic (i.e. damaged sectors) source - like floppy drives, harddisk partitions, CDs, tape devices, ..., where other tools like dd would fail doe to I/O errors:

http://safecopy.sourceforge.net/
http://sourceforge.net/projects/safecopy/

by Panzer on 17. July 2012 - 8:42  (96321)
by Panzer on 19. July 2012 - 7:35  (96387)

Meerkartor - OpenStreetMap editor:
http://merkaartor.be/

by Panzer on 24. July 2012 - 7:48  (96580)

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